Tuesday, December 8, 2009
When I first signed up for the class I did feel that. I thought that we were mostly going to be analyzing art, which we did, just not in a way that I ended up personally enjoying or taking much away from. The book itself was something that I grew to hate with a passion. Too many vague references and the same information repeated in a multitude of different ways. In essence the book was beating a dead horse. After a while of going on in this manner the reader becomes detached and zones out from the reading. It is a chore and when a reading becomes a chore the level of true understanding seems to follow suit. If readings from other sources were supplemented then maybe there would have been a higher level of understanding and interest(and I don't mean readings included on the blog, readings for class time itself, 3 hours do not need to be devoted to 20pages of reading). The projects for the class itself were very unique and thought provoking. I highly enjoyed them, they was my favorite part of the class. But this class is still young, it has not been around long, with some tweaking it shows some real promise.
When attempting to figure out some form of adequate symbolism for this project I kept drawing a blank. every semblance of a decent idea seemed to fade away. Then one day while sitting around with some fellow classmates having lunch I came up with a plan. We had been attempting to brainstorm for this project and just looking at our current surroundings. Since text was not an option the closest plain and simple symbol happened to catch my eye. It was the form of a man on a restroom sign. It is a very recognizable shape to everyone, both of the shapes chosen for the male and female restrooms. But what is it about them that makes them so recognizable in regards to gender? When were these images designed?
So for my parody on the back of the shirt I wanted to add certain elements to each figure to make the viewer really question gender. For the woman I ended up putting a large handle bar mustache on her face because a mustache is a very masculine symbol that isn't questioned in regards to gender. The man was a little bit more difficult. There is nothing I can really do to him in regards to adding a very feminine element that is unquestioningly female. I ended up sticking to the hair theme though and adding what first came to mind, a 50's/60's flipped out hair style. It just screams feminine in my subconscious. I wanted to add a purse but I felt that it would not transfer very well. But all in all I felt that my efforts to really communicate everything mentioned above fell short. The red details to make the parody portion of this clear on the back were far too small and I felt that this really did not go in depth enough.
But somehow it seems more worthy than a "nice try" comment on a grading sheet.
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Monday, October 19, 2009
Sunday, October 18, 2009
-Dante Alighieri. "The Inferno" pg. 49
"How like trying to put out fires with waterpistols, how senseless and insane"
-Ray Bradbury, "Fahrenheit 451" pg. 109
In the society within Persepolis this system of values and beliefs are made readily apparent. It is a traditional, rigid, muslin society. The women wear head scarves and are looked down upon by the dominant male forces that have elevated themselves as superiors. It is all a system of control and the head scarves indicate a place within the system, albeit a low place full of guilt and threats. The head scarves are symbols or repression, they cover up a woman's hair which is akin to covering up their freedom, liberty and sexuality. Yet I find it interesting that the main character, a teenage girl in this system, is able to assert herself as an individual and demonstrate some of the behaviors that this society frowns upon.
The main idea that this society seems to look down upon is the influence and or intrusion of western culture. The particular focus seems to be American music (be careful, it will corrupt you...). In a bold move, the girl goes out wearing a jacket with “punk is not dead” emblazoned on her back and tennis shoes. She is also looking to buy an Iron Maiden tape which I find amusing. Two older women grab her suddenly and threaten to report her for the revolutionary style she is walking around in, which takes courage to wear but also stupidity. It is a society where you have to compromise who you are in exchange for your survival. Conform or a very literal death awaits you. But some level of conformity exists everywhere, just to very different extremes. We may not face death for a lack of conformity here in this corner of the U.S, but for some individuals (I use that term loosely) fitting in becomes a priority. In reality we should be embracing the freedom to be ourselves, we have the ability to do so, so why not take advantage of it?